When it comes to smart home security, keeping an eye on your property and valuable possessions has never been easier. But when it’s time to upload your camera’s footage to the cloud, exactly how much peace of mind are you giving up? Many of the top brands in smart security promise tough end-to-end encryption, but all it takes is one skilled hacker to topple the building blocks of your privacy. Fortunately, there are several home security cameras with local storage, allowing you to keep your recordings and personal data private.
They're not hard to find either, with many companies offering SD card backup or even the ability to use a flash drive. That being said, there are hundreds of these cameras to choose from, which can make the buying process all the more daunting. But worry not; that’s where your pals at Android Police come in.
Here are our top picks for the best cams with on-device local storage
GE Cync Smart Indoor Security Camera
Put an end to prying eyes
The Cync Smart Indoor Security Camera goes above and beyond safeguarding your personal data, thanks to a privacy shutter that disables the microphone and camera. There’s also an SD card slot (up to 32GB) for offloading recorded footage.
- Works with Alexa and Google Assistant
- Sharp 1080p footage
- Offloads up to 32GB of footage (microSD card required)
- Has privacy shutter
- Wi-Fi can be finicky
- Must be plugged in at all times
The Cync Smart Indoor Security Camera is about as plug-and-play as web-connected surveillance gets these days. And best of all, once you’re up and running, you can look forward to some incredible 1080p footage for both day and night. That’s on top of features like two-way chat, as well as motion and sound detection for keeping tabs on your property. These features are all accessible through the Cync app, and you'll be able to use Alexa and Google Assistant to view live footage from a smart display, too. Do keep in mind that there's no battery power with this model, so you'll need access to an AC wall outlet.
But what about the Cync’s local storage capabilities? If you’re not into paying for a CAM Cync subscription ($3 per month or $30 per year), the Cync includes a microSD card slot that supports up to 32GB. While the camera will inevitably start recording over previously logged footage after a couple of days, having quick and easy access to these video clips is the name of the game here. We’re also big fans of the privacy shutter. Once activated, nobody will be able to see or hear what you're up to. The GE Cync Smart Indoor Security Camera may not be the most advanced camera on our list, but for a reasonable price, it’s one of the best indoor models on the market.
Arlo Go 2
Time to roam
No Wi-Fi? No problem! The Arlo Go 2 can run off of mobile data from providers like T-Mobile and Verizon, and the microSD card slot can handle up to 2TB of external storage.
- Powerful HD footage
- Connects to Wi-Fi and mobile data
- Solid companion app
- Not practical for everyone
Whether you’re taking the RV for a cross-country excursion or you want to take a reliable security camera with you on your next camping trip, the Arlo Go 2 is one of our favorite local storage cams that connects to Wi-Fi and LTE data. So, if you happen to find yourself in a corner of the world with little to no internet connection, you can lean on carriers like T-Mobile and Verizon to feed cellular data to the camera.
Arlo is also no straggler when it comes to breathtaking visuals, either. The Go 2’s 1080p footage looks crisp and clear both day and night, and you can store up to a whopping 2TB of footage on a microSD with this bad boy. There’s also two-way chat, a long-lasting rechargeable battery (no AC power required), and a built-in siren for warding off malcontents. The camera is also IP65-rated, so no worrying about rain or snow, and the Arlo Secure app can be used to customize motion detection zones, receive mobile alerts, and more.
EZVIZ C3TN Outdoor Security Camera
Save some dough with EZVIZ
As far as budget picks go, the EZVIZ C3TN is one of the best. The camera can store up to 256GB on a microSD card (not included), records in 2K resolution, and even features full-color night vision.
- Clear and colorful footage
- Great value
- Not as advanced as other models
EZVIZ has been gaining more traction in the world of smart home security, and the C3TN is another great addition to the brand’s lineup of indoor and outdoor cameras. With its 2K HD recording resolution, pixelation and other picture artifacts will be a thing of the past, and the H.265 video compression is engineered to preserve as much video quality as possible, regardless of how much lighting is available.
Now let’s talk about local storage. Like many other models on this list, the C3TN can store footage in EZVIZ’s cloud, but there’s also a microSD card slot that can handle up to 256GB of data. The camera also works well with Alexa and Google Assistant, and it provides two different options for nighttime viewing: full-color night vision and black-and-white. As far as customization and overall performance go, the EZVIZ app is what you'll use for viewing alerts, live footage, and adjusting various settings. Although this is an IP67-rated camera, be mindful of getting rainwater on or near the required AC power connection. The EZVIZ C3TN may not be the most exciting camera in our roundup, but for a wallet-friendly price, you could do a lot worse.
Amcrest Video Doorbell Pro
No more blurry footage
When it comes to homes that struggle with Wi-Fi, the Amcrest Video Doorbell Camera Pro is a saving grace. Thanks to its 2.4GHz and 5GHz antennae, you can say goodbye to choppy clips and compressed resolution.
- Connects to both 2.4GHz and 5GHz Wi-Fi
- Clear and colorful 2K resolution
- IR sensors can cause glare at night
- A little lag between doorbell and chime
It’s not too often that a video doorbell can connect to both the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands of your Wi-Fi network, but the Amcrest Video Doorbell Camera Pro is no ordinary doorbell. This bodes well for bandwidth-starved households that may already have security devices hogging up the 2.4GHz band, especially if the router is located fairly close to where the Amcrest will be installed (5GHz Wi-Fi works best over shorter distances). In terms of power though, you'll need existing doorbell wiring to use the Amcrest, seeing as there's no compartment for batteries.
In terms of features, you can also look forward to an impressive wide-angle lens that delivers a 164-degree field-of-view, with a 2K HD live/recording resolution, as well as an IP65 rating, which means the doorbell will be able to operate during rainy weather. Then there's the Amcrest Smart App, which will ping your mobile device with a notification when motion is detected. And let’s not forget about the card slot that can handle up to a 128GB Class 10 microSD card for storing surveillance footage.
Now when it comes to voice assistants, unfortunately, there's no support for Alexa or Google Assistant. Also, when recording video at night, the doorbell’s two IR sensors have been known to cause some glare. Based on user experience, this glare trouble doesn’t seem to affect all units but just know that the Amcrest may not be the best video doorbell for twilight surveillance.
Kasa Smart KC420WS
Like owning night vision goggles
Night vision is one of the most integral features of a home security camera, and the Kasa Smart KC420WS takes midnight monitoring to the next level. With its built-in spotlights and impressive picture upscaling, you’ll be able to see subjects up to 98 feet away.
- Solid companion app
- Up to 256GB of microSD storage
- Top-notch night vision
- Motion detection could use some work
Sometimes there’s a single feature that can make or break a home security camera, and if you’ve ever dealt with lackluster nighttime footage, you’ll know that night vision can definitely be one of those deciders. Fortunately, the Kasa Smart KC420WS has what it takes to keep your recorded footage under lock and key, and it’s one of the best security cams for keeping tabs on the moon and stars, come rain or shine (the KC420 features an IP65 rating). This is thanks to the onboard Starlight Sensor that keeps shadow-laden subjects in focus, along with the camera’s dual spotlights for full-color night vision. These powerful beams help to illuminate environments up to 98 feet away, and the ability to offload up to 256GB of footage onto a microSD card doesn’t hurt either.
Once connected to Wi-Fi, you'll be able to use the Kasa app to view the camera's sharp and crisp 2K resolution footage and to customize various settings. There's also two-way chat and compatibility with both Alexa and Google Assistant. Do keep in mind that there’s little in the way of AI object recognition with this camera though, with some users reporting that the KC420WS has been triggered by rain and snow. There’s also no battery option for this Kasa cam, meaning you’ll need access to a wall outlet.
A little camera for little humans
The Kasa EC60 is small enough to fit into the nooks and crannies of most nurseries, and the live-view/recording 1080p resolution isn’t half bad either. For those of us looking to keep footage local, there’s also an internal card slot that can handle up to 64GB of storage.
- Small and inexpensive
- Nice-looking footage for both day and night
- Stores up to 64GB of footage (microSD required)
- Requires constant AC power
- Initial setup can be finicky
At first glance, the Kasa EC60 is a rather unassuming piece of equipment, but simple doesn’t always have to mean bad. In fact, once the camera is connected to a wall outlet and activated, we’re betting you’ll be surprised at just how versatile this indoor, nanny-style cam actually is. For starters, the EC60 can store up to 64GB of video with the convenient, side-facing microSD card slot. The 1080p recording resolution is nothing to shake a stick at either, with many users more than pleased with the EC60’s saturation and exposure. There's also Alexa and Google Assistant support for viewing footage on whatever smart displays are hanging around your home.
Night vision is pretty good here, too, although you’ll only be able to see up to 30 feet away, and only in black and white. There’s also no battery option with this camera, so make sure you’re placing it somewhere where there’s an outlet nearby. But let’s not forget the amazing Kasa Smart Alerts that the EC60 can respond to. When cued by motion, a baby crying, or a moving person, you’ll get an instant notification, and certain automation can be programmed to occur among your other smart home gear (like smart lights turning on to ward off intruders). You'll be able to tweak these alert settings in the Kasa app.
Reolink E1 Pro Security Camera
Knows who and what to follow
The Reolink E1 Pro can store up to 256GB of local footage, and will automatically track people and pets once they enter its field-of-view. That’s on top of 2K resolution and up to 40 feet of night vision views.
- Connects to both 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands
- Impressive AI motion-tracking
- Great image quality
- Two-way audio can sound muffled (on the camera end)
Motion-tracking cameras are a dime a dozen, but the Reolink E1 Pro has got what it takes to rise above the competition. First off, Reolink doesn’t shy away from at least offering cloud storage, but thanks to its 256GB microSD card slot, those of us looking to keep footage localized should be more than satisfied. One of our absolute favorite features of the E1 Pro though, is its ability to intelligently track the motions of people and pets.
The E1 Pro can pan 355 degrees and tilt 50 degrees up and down. Once motion is detected, the camera will focus on the subject and follow the person or thing around — no manual navigation required. We also love that you can create recording schedules, so the E1 Pro will automatically log footage at a specific day and time, without needing to be triggered by motion to start the process. The camera can also connect to 2.4GHz or 5GHz Wi-Fi bands, is compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant, and can be automated and customized using the Reolink app (which is also how you'll receive mobile notifications). Do keep in mind that there's no battery compartment on the E1 Pro, which means you'll need to have the camera plugged into a wall outlet.
Wyze Cam V3 SD Card Bundle
Comes with cameras and SD cards
You’re going to need to invest in a microSD card (or two) for your local storage cam, which makes this Wyze v3 kit all the more appealing. Not only do you get two awesome v3 cameras, but the hardware is also bundled with two microSD cards.
- Bundle comes with two microSD cards
- Cameras are IP65-rated
- Great motion detection
- Not the sharpest footage
- Needs a wall outlet
Most home security cameras that offer local storage will require you to purchase a microSD card separately. And while the Wyze Cam v3 2 Camera Kit is available without cards, this awesome Amazon bundle is hard to pass up. Not only are you getting two phenomenal indoor/outdoor cams that are IP65-rated, but the kit also includes a 128GB microSDXC card and a 32GB microSD card. That’s close to 150GB of for-your-eyes-only footage! Just make sure to place these near a wall outlet or two because battery power isn’t an option here.
Wyze is a force to be reckoned with in the world of home security, and thanks to features like color night vision and 1080p recording, the v3 model delivers sharp and clear visuals, day or night. And with the Wyze app (for iOS and Android), you’ll be able to adjust settings, receive motion alerts, and check on your home in seconds flat.
Blink Video Doorbell w/ Sync Module 2
Have a USB flash drive hanging around?
This Blink Video Doorbell bundle includes the Sync Module 2, which has a built-in USB port. This allows you to connect a USB flash drive (up to 256GB) to the device, making it simple to offload your footage. Just be prepared to do a little formatting for some drives.
- Can offload footage to a USB flash drive
- Great price for a video doorbell
- Works nicely with Alexa
- Motion detection can be finicky
- Sync Module 2 can lose connection
In the world of video doorbells, many brands are vying for your attention, but Amazon has the strongest foothold in the marketplace. Not only does the company own Ring outright, but Amazon also makes its own video doorbells and home security cameras. Installing the Blink Video Doorbell takes little to no time at all, and once it’s up and running, it delivers all the essential features of a smart security product, including 1080p recording, two-way chat, Alexa compatibility, and local storage, which are all available (and customizable) through the Blink Home Monitor app. It may not be as feature-rich as the Amcrest model, but we loved our experience with the Blink Video Doorbell anyway.
Unlike other doorbells and cameras though, offsite storage isn’t located on the cam itself, but on the Sync Module 2. This is the tiny device that connects to your Wi-Fi network and beams its own mesh signal to the Blink Video Doorbell. The Sync Module 2 includes a USB port, allowing you to download footage from the system to a thumb drive. Who said that archiving always has to be handled by a microSD card?
Keep home security under lock and key with on-device local storage
As you can see, there are many kinds of local storage cameras on the market, and they'll work with either a microSD card or a USB flash drive. When it comes time to buy one of these cameras though, you should mentally add another $20 or $30 to your budget, simply to cover the cost of whatever microSD you’ll need to invest in. As newer cameras release, we’ll be sure to update this roundup to include the latest and greatest picks, but we’re more than confident to stand behind the laurels of every product we chose — especially the GE Cync Smart Indoor Security Camera.
With its excellent image quality and voice assistant compatibility, the Cync offers the best balance of features, performance, and value. If you’re looking to put AI motion-tracking to the test, the Reolink E1 Pro is a great camera with lightning-fast reflexes, instant alerts, and solid storage capabilities. Saving a few bucks is always a wise consideration, too, which is why the EZVIZ C3TN is one of the best choices for those of us with limited funds to dip into.
GE Cync Smart Indoor Security Camera
The Cync Smart Indoor Security Camera goes above and beyond the safeguarding of your personal data, thanks to a privacy shutter that disables the microphone and camera. There’s also an SD card slot (up to 32GB) for offloading recorded footage.